Like homeless among ruins of their homes

- PRATAP BISTA, SARLAHI

Aug 29, 2017-Floods triggered by incessant rainfall washed away the house of 71-year-old Mahendra Mahara of Ram Nagar Rural Municipality-7 in Sarlahi  two weeks ago.

Mahara has been living under a makeshift tent ever since. He could not find a better shelter like many other villagers who lost their homes to the floods. 

Heavy rains and flood in the Bagmati river had inundated more than 550 homes in Ram Nagar. Around 80 houses, including Mahara’s, were destroyed. 

“Many of us have been forced to live in these plastic tents. Sleep is rare because we have no protection against wind and heavy rains,” Mahara said.  

Some of the flood-displaced families have moved in with their relatives and neighbours, but most are living under tarpaulin tents without warm clothes and beddings.  

“We are struggling to survive. We have not had a proper meal for the last 15 days,” said Harendra Raut, another flood survivor. 

The flood-affected people wonder how long they will have to go on living in present condition, like homeless persons among the ruins of their homes.

The floods have mostly affected the impoverished Chamar, Harjara and Paswan communities.

“I lost my house, food grains, everything I had in the flood,” said 86-year-old Bishnu Mahara. “Nobody seems to care about our problems. Politicians come to us during election and they forget about us when we are in trouble.”

The flood-displaced people said they were surviving on donated foodstuffs. 

Chief District Officer Pradipraj Kandel said the floods affected mostly the south-western part of Sarlahi.

 “We have been distributing relief to the flood-affected families,” he said. 

According to the District Administration Office, 13 people lost their lives in floods, two are still missing. More than 2,000 houses were inundated in Sarlahi district. 

Published: 29-08-2017 07:23

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